Who knew an apple a day could do so much…

An apple a day

 
That old saying “an apple a day keeps the doctor away” probably holds a lot more truth than many of us realize, and for good reason. Read on to find out more about the “miracle” fruit.

Delicious and nutritious
Phyllis A. Balch, CNC, in her book Prescription for Dietary Wellness, Second Edition, says one apple, eaten whole with the skin, has about 3.6 grams of fiber, which is about 17 percent of the recommended daily dietary fiber intake. Apples are good for all of us, but especially helpful for people who suffer with the following ailments: acid stomach, arthritis, colon inflammation, diarrhea, enteritis, goiter, gout, herpes, intestinal infections and prostate problems.

She says researchers at Cornell University have found that the phytochemical quercetin in apples has stronger anticancer properties than vitamin C. In its function as an anti-inflammatory, quercetin is noted for its effectiveness in treating prostate problems. Balch writes, “Apples help to detoxify metals in the body, protect against heart disease, clean the bladder, protect against the effects of radiation exposure, lower blood cholesterol and blood pressure, maintain circulatory and intestinal health and stabilize blood sugar. Now it seems that the latest research shows that eating apples may help prevent lung disorders.”

Eat the whole apple
To get the full benefit it’s better to eat the whole fruit, peeling, pulp and even the core if you’re so inclined. Unfortunately, apples rate high on the list of produce with heavy pesticide residues, so it’s a good idea to wash apples well first. You can use a mild detergent and a vegetable brush. Just be sure to rinse the fruit well after scrubbing. Or buy certified organic.

Key nutrients in apples include:
➢    Vitamins—B6, C, E and folate, riboflavin, thiamine, niacin, pantothenic acid
➢    minerals—iron, potassium, boron, zinc, copper, manganese
➢    fiber
➢    phytochemicals—beta-carotene, quercetin, phytosterols, pectin, gallic acid, ellagic acid, ferulic acid, caffeic acid, tocopherol, chlorogenic acid, chlorophyll, catechin, P-coumaric acid, rutin and sinapic acid

Apples are accomplished role changers on the kitchen stage. They can be eaten raw, added to vegetable salads, baked whole, stewed, made into pies … the list goes on and on.

Following is a recipe for a light (without the walnuts, only 114 calories!), delicious winter dessert.

Recipe: BAKED APPLE

Use one apple per serving, and increase the proportions accordingly for each apple baked.

1 small apple, cored
1 tablespoon raisins
1 teaspoon lemon juice
½ teaspoon shredded coconut
½ teaspoon honey
Sprinkle of ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon water

Peel the apple halfway down. In a small bowl combine remaining ingredients, except for the water. Pack into the cored apple. Place water in the bottom of an ovenproof custard cup. Add the apple, cover with foil and bake at 350ºF for 35 to 45 minutes.

Note: You can also add some finely chopped walnuts to the filling mixture.

Enjoy!

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